By Bimbo Esho
Alhaji Olanrewaju Adepoju, the great ewi exponet , 83, died on Sunday at his Idi Orogbo off Ring Ring Road, Ibadan, Oyo State residence around 7 pm.
Adejare Adepoju, his son, revealed in a brief announcement on Sunday, saying “Baba has gone to rest. Inna lilahi Wa innaa ilaehi Roojiuuna. My Dad, Olanrewaju Adepoju, Rest in Peace”
He wrote another message on Facebook, “In memory of my beloved father, Alhaji Chief Olanrewaju Adepoju(ewi exponent), a passionate human rights activist, accomplished author, and gifted poet.
“His life’s work was dedicated to making our country a more just and compassionate place. As we grieve, let’s carry forward his torch of advocacy for a brighter future. Rest in power, Dad.:
Olanrewaju ‘s family also wrote: “With heavy hearts, we announce the passing of our dear Father, Chief Mas’ud Olanrewaju Adepoju. From Allah we come and unto Him we shall all return.”
According to The Punch report , the family announced that Adepoju would be buried according to Islamic rites on Monday by 11 am.
“Final prayers will be held for Baba tomorrow Monday, by 11 in the morning, at UMB Central Mosque, Old Ife Road, Gate Ibadan.
“May Almighty Allah grant our father the highest elevation in Paradise, Jannatu Firdaus!” the family said.
Some people are naturally gifted with special skills. Adepoju, the great ewi exponent was in this category. He was a product of self discovery and development , aided by an unrelenting search for knowledge.
It is amazing that books written by this man who never saw the four walls of any classroom be it Primary, Secondary or Tertiary have had great influence on contemporary Yoruba poetry and today used in different institutions.
This great ewi exponent was not only versed in the proficiency of Yoruba language but also his use of English was topnotch.
Olanrewaju Adepoju was a poet, playwright, author and social crusader who used the power of his poetry to influence successive government policies. He wrote Sagba Dewe, Ironu Akewi, Orirun Yoruba among others.
In the dark days of the Military regime Olanrewaju Adepoju was a force to be reckoned with as many of his songs centered on correcting societal ills and unfavorable government policies.
His genre of ewi warned, criticized and also entertained his followers.
This great ewi exponent who is a native of Oyo State lost his sight few years ago before finally succumbing to the cold hands of death today.
The output of his deep imagination and vision of poetry with the development of his creative consciousness are already being curated in books and musical forms for posterity.
He will forever be remembered for his contribution to poetry in Nigeria.